A woman was injured when a bomb exploded in her handbag in the capital’s Agargaon yesterday. Police suspect the explosive was activated by a mobile phone.
Police detained the injured, Ayesha Siddique, assistant programme officer of Bangladesh Computer Council (BCC), and her colleague Zubayer Ahmed and one Nurul Islam in this connection.
During primary interrogation, Zubayer confessed to planting the explosive in Ayesha’s bag “to teach her a lesson”. He claimed he had a romantic relationship with Ayesha but they had been coming up against some issues recently, said Zakir Hossain Mollah, officer-in-charge of Sher-e-Bangla Nagar Police Station.
Zubayer bought the bomb from Nurul Islam for Tk 20,000, police said, quoting Zubayer.
Ayesha, 31, was undergoing treatment at the National Institute of Traumatology and Orthopaedic Rehabilitation (Nitor) under police custody.
She told The Daily Star that Zubayer, programme officer at BCC, called her over her mobile phone, asking her to meet him at 11:00am in front of the Islamic Foundation, which is close to the BCC building at Agargaon.
When she went there, Zubayer gave her a packet, saying it was a mobile phone and asked her to keep it on his desk.
“The packet was heavier than that of a mobile phone. Zubayer told me that there were a few more things in it. So I left him and put the packet in my bag,” she added.
Within a few minutes she heard a light sound and felt a vibration, she said, adding that immediately there was an explosion.
Her right hand and part of her waist on the right side were wounded. She was given three bags of blood, doctors said.
Doctors recovered three splinters from her right thigh and back, said Nitro Director Prof Abdul Awal Rizvi.
OC Zakir Hossain said police recovered the handbag, parts of a mobile phone set, a SIM card and parts of the bomb from the scene.
“We arrested Zubayer form the hospital when he went there to see Ayesha. On intelligence from him, we also arrested Nurul from Kazipara [in the capital],” he added.
Police were trying to arrest those who had made the bomb, he said.
Ayesha claimed Zubayer had been harassing her for the last several months and had proposed marriage two months ago.
“I rejected his proposal and had been avoiding him. Today, [yesterday] I went there to meet him as he said it was official,” she added.
The Daily Star could not verify her claims independently.
Sanwar Hossain, additional deputy commissioner of detective police, said the bomb was highly sophisticated and was the first of its kind to be exploded in the country.
A mobile phone was used to activate the explosive, he said, adding: “I would say it was an improvised explosive device rather a bomb. Those who made it are highly knowledgeable and have experience of making such devices.”
Police have opened an investigation into the explosion.